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Border Guard: Slovakia temporarily unblocks checkpoint at Slovakia-Ukraine border

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk November 22, 2023 10:09 AM 2 min read
An aerial view of a line of trucks at the Slovakian border with Ukraine near Vysne Nemecke, Slovakia on Nov. 11, 2023. (Robert Nemeti/Anadolu via Getty Images)
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Slovak truckers have temporarily unblocked a border checkpoint at the Slovakia-Ukraine border, allowing cargo to pass through, Ukraine's State Border Guard spokesperson Andrii Demchenko told Ukrainska Pravda on Nov. 22.

The temporary lift came after negotiations with Slovak border guards.

The crossing between Vysne Nemecke in Slovakia and Uzhhorod in Ukraine began to be blocked on Nov. 21 by the Slovak Truckers Union. However, Demchenko said that 250 trucks crossed through the checkpoint in both directions over the past 24 hours on Nov. 21, albeit 100 fewer than is typical for the previous days.

Slovak truckers threatened on Nov. 16 to join Polish truckers in blocking border crossing points with Ukraine to protest the EU's liberalization of transport rules for Ukrainian trucks.

Protests on Nov. 11 also forced trucks traveling toward Vysne Nemecke to wait in an 18-kilometer line.

Polish protests at the Ukrainian border stretch into their third week, with Ukraine accusing the protesters of causing further harm to its wartime economy.

Polish truckers complain that the high number of Ukrainian drivers entering Poland are hauling goods from Poland to other countries, undercutting local businesses that cannot match cheaper Ukrainian prices.

Ukrainian officials and industry representatives deny the accusations.

Although the protesting Polish truckers said that the blockade would only apply to non-essential goods, Ukrinform reported on Nov. 20 that trucks carrying humanitarian aid or fuel and other essential goods had been on standby at the border for days.

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